Nascar buys Talladega Superspeedway parent International Speedway for $2 billion

Nascar buys Talladega Superspeedway parent International Speedway for $2 billion
Nascar Holdings will be the new owner of Talladega Superspeedway's parent company, International Speedway Corp. (Curtis Palmer / Wikimedia)

Nascar Holdings Inc. agreed to buy International Speedway Corp. for about $2 billion in cash, more tightly combining two companies already controlled by the France family.

Nascar raised its price to clinch the deal for the owner of famous stock-car racing venues including the Daytona International Speedway in Florida and the Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama. International Speedway shareholders will get $45 a share under the agreement announced Wednesday, up from a $42 offer in November.

The idea at the time was to combine the companies as a privately held group, with the France family as the primary owners. Jim France is chairman of International Speedway and chief executive officer of Nascar.

International Speedway shares were halted Wednesday. The $45 price is 2 percent above the Tuesday closing price of $44.10. The stock, which traded as low as $35.18 in October last year, jumped into that range when Nascar disclosed its November bid.

Firemen’s Retirement System of St. Louis, an International Speedway shareholder, filed a lawsuit in December seeking class-action status, saying Nascar’s offer represented a breach of fiduciary duty by the France family. A lawyer for the lead plaintiff has agreed not to challenge the new deal price, the companies said Wednesday in announcing the merger.

Dean Bradley Osborne Partners advised International Speedway’s special committee considering the deal, which the parties expect to close this year. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. advised Nascar.

(Contact the reporters at [email protected]and [email protected].)

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